tv CNN Newsroom CNN December 26, 2011 1:00pm-3:00pm EST
i'm natalie allen in today for randi kaye. it's 1:00. newt gingrich's campaign for president is standing by its claim that it was gingrich's first wife jackie who requested the couple's divorce back in 1980. so what? well, for decades gingrich has been hounded by this story of having served his wife with divorce papers while she was on a sick bed with cancer. lately, the couple's daughter has been denying that story forcefully. but cnn obtained the actual papers from the carroll county courthouse here in georgia. they show newt did the filing claiming the marriage was irretrievably broken. jackie gingrich opposed the petition. we will get much more on this in our next segment, moments from now. overseas a large delegation from the arab league is due in syria today. it is supposed to observe, and therefore, discourage the government's brutal crackdown on its own people. a crackdown that seems to be in
full force despite a promise to the arab league just last week. this is amateur video reportedly from the flash point city of homs. the opposition says 22 people have been killed here today alone. the global intelligence website stratfor is still down after hackers stole thousands of client names. a group called anonymous says it has no brief with stratfor who it considers an unbiased source for information. >> stratfor is in the business of providing geopolitical information the way the sort of state department does about
political climate, on a very granular realtime basis. both to the general public in a more broadway an more specifically in their e-mails that people pay for. so in a sense they are in the security business, so that makes them kind of a ripe target for headline purposes, i guess. >> stratfor says it is diligently investigating the breach. it is boxing day in britain, an annual holiday that's one of the biggest shopping days of the year. but, a strike by london's subway drivers is creating a major headache for millions of shoppers. the drivers walked out over a pay dispute. city officials are warning of severe disruption for those seeking bargains in bond's shopping centers. several subway lines shut down completely while a few are running a limited schedule. but, stores in london's tony west end say the strike has not made much after dent in their business. in new york, subways are running normally an shoppers are out in force, either returning
christmas presents or taking advantage of the sales. alison kosik is in the thick of it all for us. what's it like right now? >> reporter: well, if you ever wondered why retailers call the week between christmas and new year's the second season, your answer is literally all around me. all these people around me are all window shopping or actually shopping themselves here in the macy's here in new york city. i did a little reconnaissance on my own walking into macy's. i don't think i want to do that again on the day after christmas. there was a sea of people inside this department store. what they're doing is, yes, returning gifts but what they're also doing is buying, because what retailers are doing is they're marking down their emergency, even more than they did before the christmas holiday because they've got a lot of stuff on their hands and lots of consumers are taking advantage of it. >> we just thought that maybe there would be sales but instead i think it is a big return day so lines are crazy.
to just get in line and pay. then the fitting rooms are crazy though, too. i don't know. it is just craziness. >> apparently there's big deals so we want to go for the deals. >> reporter: one thing working in retail's favor, the retailer's favor right now is actually the good weather that we're having across the country. you think of what was happening last year around this time, at least up and down east coast. we had blizzard conditions but even then during the week between christmas and new year's last year, retailers in that one week brought in $62 billion. natalie, this week they are expecting to bring in $72 billion. the numbers will start coming in the next few weeks when they're all tallied up. >> truly amazing. a lot of shopping bags walking past you behind you. alison kosik, thanks so much. coming up here, could newt gingrich's past hurt his future? we'll talk more about the court documents casting doubt on gingrich's version of his divorce details. but first, today's rock
star. 16-year-old alex newman of new orleans caught the football bug when she was only 8. she is a vocal fan of saints tight end jimmy graham. over christmas she an her back-up singer stella posted a tribute to graham. >> i want to shake hands with jimmy graham, i want to take a double photo in front of the super dome. >> saint jimmy saw the video and became st. mick. in our opinion, you're all rock stars.
the presidential race and personal responsibility. newt gingrich is squarely in the center of debate on fidelity an family. his failed marriages have been the subject of veiled attacks by some of his rivals who are now trotting out their wiv on the campaign trail. and in campaign ads. for gingrich's part, he has admitted to making mistakes in the past and says he's different now as the 68-year-old grandfather. but it hasn't ended the questions, especially about his first marriage. joining me now is cnn reporter alan duke who has personally looked into the court records surrounding that first failed marriage. alan, what did you learn? >> well, i started looking at this because i saw a new defense by the gingrich campaign emerge the last few months. i've been covering this for 30 years and that's how long i've been on this story covering newt gingrich an i've never heard
them suggest their new defense, an that's that jackie gingrich, his first wife, was the one who wanted a divorce and that newt filed it for them. i decided to go to the carroll county, georgia courthouse to look at the file itself. i had a little bit of trouble finding it. seems a retired clerk stashed it away to protect it. when i finally found it, what i found was actually contradictory information to what newt gingrich's campaign is now saying. in fact, jackie gingrich, 75 years old now, told the court 31 years ago that she did not want the divorce and in fact looking at the document, defendant shows she has adequate and am balance grounds for a divorce but that she does not desire one at this time. this is before georgia adopted no-fault divorce laws and she could, in effect, keep him in the marriage if the judge allowed it. that's what she was trying to do through court papers which indicate that what gingrich is saying now, that he did not -- that it was she that wanted the
divorce and that he was just obliging her, that seems to be rewriting history at least according to the court papers. but then i talked to people who were close to the couple at the time, including gerald johnson. he was in their sunday school class at the first baptist church in carrollton. he said he was surprised to hear anybody suggest that jackie gingrich was the one wanting the divorce. >> has the gingrich campaign responded to this find on your part. >> they say the court papers say what they say but that the case is -- that gingrich was simply hiring the lawyer and filing the divorce. but at her request they specifically say it, at her request. it is also something the daughter has repeated, but she was 13 at the time, people who were adults then are laughing at this. people who knew the gingriches at the time. >> all right. alan duke, we appreciate it. we're going to be talking about the relevance of this and how it
may play out on the campaign trail a little bit later on but we appreciate it. if you want to read more about alan's reporting and what he has found, check out our website at cnn.com. you can read more about it. coming up at the bottom of the hour in "fair game," we will talk with our political insiders about the effects this will have on the gingrich campaign. so stay with us for that. if you are a poker player, listen up. a new ruling has states eager to bet on internet gambling. how they plan to cash in with your money is next. but first, you may be helpeded to the store today to return all those unwanted christmas gifts for something better? not that you don't appreciate the thought, of course, but you just don't need another polka do the neck tie. likely to be returned -- clothes that don't fit or make you say -- stinky perfume is another. bad toys or games. so today's the day to say lousy
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almost anything you can do legally, you can do virtually. that is online. but a federal law that long predates the internet has pretty much forbidden online gambling -- until now. now the justice department is reinterpreting the wire act of 1961 to bar internet sports betting only. so what? well, when it comes to online poker or lotto, all bets may be on. and several states are working on ways to cash in. my next guest may be the world's
top authority on gambling and the law which happens to be the name of his website. i. nelson rose has written several books and hundreds of columns, a distinguished senior professor at whittier law school in california. professor rose, thank you for joining us. >> thank you for inviting me. >> no new laws have been passed, no old ones repealed. so how did the landmark change come about? >> well, there was one law. the unlawful internet gambling enforcement act was rammed through congress a couple years ago, actually by conservative republicans designed to outlaw internet gambling, and it may have accidentally legalized it, because it's got an exception for gambling that is 100% within a single state. if it's legal in a state. the department of justice had always said the wire act makes all forms of gambling illegal, and even if the wire just happens to go into another state
and come back, it is illegal. and on friday they issued a kind of christmas present to the legal internet gambling community saying, no, no, we don't care if the wire crosses into another state, as long as it is all the better or the operator in one state and we only care about sports betting anyway. >> the feds went after the big three online poker operations. are they now saying they were wrong? >> no. they used a different law. they used the new york state antigambling law to pig gee back and try to make it into a federal crime. it still has to be legal on the state level to be legal under federal law. >> so what is allowed now and what isn't? that's probably what a lot of people are wondering. >> well, this pretty much opens the door to everything, everything at least until -- except sports betting, an even that is under challenge in new jersey in the courts.
it means that -- well we've got two jurisdictions already -- nevada and the district of columbia have legalized internet poker and other forms of online gambling. they're just not up and operating yet. but this means now they're legal. they are legal under state law, they're legal under federal law. they can make agreements between the various states. we're about to see a real explosion of internet gambling. this is also a gift to the states to help them balance their budget. so what we're going to find is california, iowa -- iowa will probably be the next state, new jersey will have it on the ballot in november and then every other state, florida and the others, are going to follow, looking at probably starting with internet poker but also other forms. certainly the lotteries aring internet and we're going to have internet casinos and it will start being in trust state and
other countries to let anybody play on any site as long as it is legal. >> you mentioned a few states that are prepared to cash in. do you expect to be this onslought of states moving to jump a jump on the others? >> we are in the third wave of legal gambling. this is the third time in american history that gambling has spread everywhere. it took almost 40 years to have 46 of the states have state lotteries. we are going to see -- we've already got district of columbia and nevada. next year probably iowa, california and new jersey. then pretty quickly we'll see a lot of other states. massachusetts, florida, michigan, oregon, washington -- it will still take a decade, but, yeah, we are about to see a
lot of states jump on the bandwagon. understand there's so much legal gambling in this country that legalizing one more form -- internet poker -- is no big deal and the slates are absolutely desperate for revenue to try to balance their budgets. gambling is seen as a painless tax so this is an easy way for states to raise some money. the only question is who gets the license. the big operators want a federal law because they know they're going to have to compete in 50 states against powerful local gambling operators. >> we appreciate you explaining it to us. i. nelson rose, professor rose, thanks so much. your website if people want more information, gamblingandthelaw.com. thank you so much. before we move on, if you bought a powerball ticket from a truck stop on interstate 20 in georgia six months ago, think about it. did do you that? check the numbers. whoever holds the winner from the drawing on june 29th never
collected his or her $77 million jackpot. and the deadline, well, it is today. the winning numbers -- 24, 30, 45, 57 and 59 and powerball 26. the clock is ticking. the christmas weekend wasn't all holiday cheer. a rare string of violence swept across the country, including a bizarre family murder-suicide in texas. on christmas day. we're getting new information about what really happened. i'd race down that hill without a helmet.
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after he robbed two people and shot them dead on christmas eve. jamaal clemons is also accused of hijacking a car and taking off without realizing a 2-year-old boy was in the back seat. after an amber alert was issued, police found the get-away car ditched in a nearby sim tear and the boy was found safe. police say the 27-year-old suspect is armed and dangerous. in california, a soldier who came home after being injured in afghanistan was shot by someone at his own welcome home party. 22-year-old christopher sullivan is now paralyzed and in critical condition after friday's shooting. police have identified the suspect and sullivan's family is begging him to turn himself in. we get more on it from affiliate reporter jim nash. >> turn yourself in. he's a good kid. he didn't deserve this. he didn't deserve this at all.
>> reporter: an uncle holds the sobbing mother of an injured afghanistan veteran, army specialist christopher sullivan remains on life support in a sarn bern dsan bernadino hospital. he's been recovering from brain damage in a suicide bomber explosion that killed five of his fellow soldiers in afghanistan. friday night at a welcome home party for sullivan in this house, two men began arguing about football. a gun was pulled. sullivan stepped in to stop the fight and was shot twice, once in the neck, paralyzing possibly his entire body. now police are looking for the gunman. >> that was jim nash from ktla. coming up next hour, sullivan's mom talks with cnn about her son and the latest in the investigation. well, more holiday crime to report. a family of seven near dallas just finished opening gifts christmas morning when all of them were shot and killed by one of their own. that according to police in
grapevine, texas. they say the suspect was among the dead and was related to the family by marriage. >> can't imagine anybody doing that to their family. i think it just puts people on alert, like to be more aware of who's around them. you never know who lives next to you. >> any day of the year it is very tragic. it is certainly amplified because it is christmas. >> he killed four women, a man, and a teenage boy. they ranged in age from 15 years old to 59. reporter salina hernandez joins us from outside ft. worth, texas, what more do we know? >> reporter: this is a very tragic situation. grapevine police are still trying to piece together the events that unfolded early yesterday morning. they do tell us at this point that they have reason to believe they have a motive, but at this point they are not releasing it. again, we do know that what has
been confirmed by grapevine police was that the gunman was dressed in a santa suit an that the family had just completed its traditional christmas celebration. there were unwrapped packages and a tree in the living room area when the gunman, according to police, opened fire on the family members. again just a very horrific situation out in grapevine, outside of ft. worth, texas. >> what more do you know about how he was related to the victims or what his relationship was with the victims? >> well, at this time, grapevine police have identified all the victims but they are waiting the medical examiner to release the names of these individuals as they track down next of kin. now we do know that they are a family. but the extent of their ties at this point is not yet clear. but we do know that they were all related by blood in some fashion. >> such a tragic story. we appreciate your information
for us, salina hernandez out of dallas, thank you. new problems right now for newt gingrich. first a big failure in his new home state. now new questions about his personal life. two big questions. can he pull it together before iowa? that's in "fair game" and our discussion is next. but first, our political junkie question of the day. which state passed a law establishing the first official presidential primary? we'll have the answer for you just ahead. [ woman ] my boyfriend and i were going on vacation, so i used my citi thank you card to pick up some accessories. a new belt. some nylons. and what girl wouldn't need new shoes? we talked about getting a diamond. but with all the thank you points i've been earning... ♪ ...i flew us to the rock i really had in mind. ♪
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before the break i asked what state passed a law establishing the first official presidential primary? the answer -- oregon. they did it in 1910. by the time the 1912 presidential election rolled around, a total of 12 states had primaries in place. it is time for the part of the show where we go to the heart of the political debate where all things are "fair game." it is eight days until the iowa caucuses, but one candidate is having a bit of trouble staying focused on iowa right now. that's newt gingrich. he has seen his big iowa lead evaporate and now he's also got
a little problem in virginia. joining me today, democratic political consultant ed espinoza and republican analyst lenny mccallister. lenny, newt gingrich didn't meet the requirements to get on the ballot for the virginia primary. what does that mean for him? >> well, what it means for him is this -- people are going to look at him and understand why they don't like him. people say that this was a situation where it was a lack of organization. to me, this is at the height of arrogance. he overlook this because he was so focused on catching back-up and he just took it for granted that he was going to be on this virginia ballot, that he basically stepped in it. what he has to do now, you're finding this -- the situations with his personal life as well. ep needs to step back and be more humble, come across as the hum gal newt all over again. that's what he was earlier in some of these debates when he came to people attacking him personally. he took it on the chin for the republican party. the republican candidates. he can go back to being that humble newt again, which other
folks don't think he can do. if he does he can rebound from this. if he doesn't do that, you'll continue to see him slip down the polls? spl what about you, ed? can we see a humble newt. >> humble newt doesn't really exist. it shows us in virginia, if you look back to 2008, every single democratic candidate qualified for the ballot in virginia. maybe a couple of not-real candidates weren't there, but everyone you ever heard about or that was in the debates was on that ballot. 5 of the 7 republican candidates are not on the virginia ballot. this demonstrates a very weak field and in gingrich's case, probably the first time in presidential primaries where somebody who is still in the race is not on the ballot in his home state. this is a problem. >> okay. that's the virginia problem. let's talk about the divorce situation that doesn't seem to go away. earlier in the show we talked about the details of gingrich's first divorce and saw court
records. fidelity was a hot topic at one of the last debates, but will this latest divorce story mean anything to voters in from my perspective from just watching people being interviewed in iowa, it depend whom you ask. what do you think? start with you, lenny. >> it all depends again on who you ask and how he handles this. listen, herman cain gave the blueprint on how to fumble this situation. let's see if newt gingrich follows the right way to do it versus following the herman cain way to do it. listen, admit the fact that this happened decades ago. that you made indiscretions years ago and the person that made those indiscretions years -- and in some instances decades ago -- is not the individual running for president today. he has to create separation from what he did in the past and admit some contrition and say, but i'm a different man today, i've grown in my faith, i've grown if my personality and my convictions, and that's why i'm
running for president of the united states. if he can message that way, he'll rebound and be okay and even the virginia flub will make a difference and he'll be able to move past that and move forward again. at this time four years ago hillary clinton was being said as the democratic nominee. >> ed, is this going to be an issue that will haunt him in iowa? >> unfortunately, divorce is a very common thing in this country so i done think anybody's going to hold it against him about having gone through divorce. the bigger prem heoblem here is he addresses it. we've seen some inconsistencies in the messages that he gives on things that he's done in the past. same thing with freddie mac. did he lobby for freddie mac or did he not? how did he handle his divorce? how is he handling his campaign organization in places like iowa and virginia? i don't know that his divorce is the issue as much as it is about
how he says things or how he deals with things that becomes a bigger issue, an then maybe the voters end up divorce their support from him. >> bottom line, iowa looked like a mess right now. what do you make of where things stand now. does anyone have an advantage in a close race like this one? this is -- >> we don't know yet. that's the beauty of american politics when people are actually involved. you can't decide a race on one campaign or one election. it's going to be a process and the good thing for people such as romney, such as somebody like a newt gingrich, and others, you have an opportunity to develop who you are as a candidate and show the american people what type of leader you would be in the oval office. i think this is a good thing. i think even what we find out in iowa next week will not necessarily dictate what it is going to look like when we head to tampa. >> ed? >> it doesn't dictate things but it dentally sets momentum for candidates. the nice thing about small
states like iowa is it gives candidates who have big ideas but maybe small war chests, an ability to express themselves and get some traction. what we are seeing in iowa right now is gingrich on his way down, mitt romney flat lining, and ron paul on his way up. i think ron paul's going to have a big surprise in iowa next week. we've seen this before. mike huckabee did it in 2008. john mccain did it in 2000. some o could even say brovm is president today because of the strength of his organization in iowa in 2008. so let's see what happens and my money's on ron paul. >> we'll see. >> ron paul will win. >> that's got to be "fair game." >> if ron paul wins, natalie, it is not going to mean that much. >> the ron paul question. we will leave it there. remember, next tuesday night the country's first real votes taking place in the iowa caucuses. watch it all unfold live right here on cnn, america's choice 2012. coverage of the iowa caucuses
begins tuesday night, january 3rd, 7:00 p.m. eastern. stay with us for that here on cnn. another deadly bomb attack in a country that's lived with war for nearly nine years. find out where the attack happened and what it could mean for a very fragile government when we go globe trekking. that's next. try bayer advanced aspirin. it has microparticles so it enters the bloodstream fast and rushes relief to the site of your tough pain. it's proven to relieve pain twice as fast as before. bayer advanced aspirin.
the country, another deadly suicide bombing in baghdad today. incredibly, the bomber drove through six security checkpoints before detonating the bomb. cnn's arwa damon is there for us. arwa, where did this latest attack happen and what is the latest on the number killed and wounded? >> well, natalie, at least five people were killed, dozens more were wounded but what makes this attack especially disturbing, the suicide bomber is believed to have been able to get through six checkpoints. the target was a checkpoint just outside of the heavily fortified ministry of interior. an official from the ministry was telling us they believe the suicide bomber came from outside of bag which is why he would have had to go through so many checkpoints. they said he was driving an ordinary car, the kind you would find on the streets. they're trying to investigate what kind of i.d.s he may have been carrying, how he was able to get through these checkpoints because the iraqi security forces are supposed to be on high alert following those devastating attacks that took
place on thursday. security searches are supposed to be more stringent. so this not only is raising questions about the capabilities of the iraqi security forces, it is all raising that ongoing question to what degree have the iraqi security forces been infiltrated. >> absolutely. everyone was hoping this would not be the case. now we have had to two issues. this got one six security checkpoints. any government reaction to the fact that the bomber was able to infiltrate in that way. >> reporter: none at this stage, natalie. the iraqi government usually tends to say that they just have ongoing investigations trying to figure out how security breaches do take place. these are of course word that fall fairly flat with the iraqi population because they are not hearing any sort of reassurance, any sort of plan the government has to prevent this from happening in the future. >> arwa damon for us live from baghdad, thank you. coming up here, the government will pay to keep a kidney patient alive, but it won't pay less money to save his
end-stage renal disease and is an illegal immigrant. medicaid will pay for his dialysis, medicare pays for transplants -- but not for immigrants. just look at the numbers -- left column, the kidney transplant plus yearly antirejection drugs. he can't get that. right column -- he can get. a lifetime of dialysis at $75,000 a year. that accumulated cost is enormous compared to the surgery which he does not qualify for. angel's legal status makes this a sticky case, just the sort art kaplan specializes in. he's collector for the center of bioethics at the university of pennsylvania. art, there are people who will see this and say, why doesn't he head back to mexico and get the surgery there? >> well, he could. let's make one thing clear. he is going to get his transplant from his brother.
so he's not going to take the kidney out of the pool that would be available from people who donate organs. he's going to get a live transplant. that is in his favor. he's not, so to speak, taking from anybody else. i think a lot of folk would say go back to mexico. they do do transplants there. they can certainly do this kind of kidney transplant there. but he's been here i think a dozen years. everybody who works with him loves this guy. he has a brother who wants to help him. new york state has said, yeah, we'll do the dialysis. so i think a case can be made that not all immigrants are the same. this is a guy i think who probably should get his transplant here. he's been here long enough. his kids are u.s. citizens.
>> can illegal immigrants get health insurance? >> he can. the problem this guy faces is he's got a failing set of kidneys, no one's going to insure him. if he applied for this health insurance he could have gotten it even if he was an illegal immigrant, but now with his kidneys going out, he's not likely to get that. >> this doesn't make any financial sense if you look at the numbers we put on the screen. isn't there someone they can go to to say, this is nuts, we've got to make this happen? >> i like that technical ethics term -- nuts. i think it is kind of nuts. he wants to stay. everybody who knows him wants him to stay. he's exactly the kind of hard working person that i think in some ways we want to say, yeah, become a citizen, stay, let's open a track for him, but that hasn't happened. unless that happens, he's kind of operating in the shadows all the time. he doesn't want to flag immigration to send him back. he doesn't want to lose his kids who are american citizens.
they're going to be staying here. i think it is an appeal to common sense of either of state bureaucracy in new york state saying save us all some money, let this brother donate to him or trying to be in a situation where he makes an appeal to a hospital, somewhere in new york an says, look, can't you waive fees, can't you do this for me, i'll pay you back over time but it is going to be cheaper for everybody and better for me if i get this. >> so cheaper, yes. everyone has compassion for what is certainly a good guy who's done very well in this country. but you alluded to a bigger problem, and that is, if you help someone like this, aren't you opening the floodgates for people who want to come to this country and get education and health care and other things that they could get in the u.s. that they can't get where they are now? >> great question. i'll draw a line. people here more than a decade, they've got a job and kids who are american citizens, let's be
practical here, let this guy get a cheaper way to get his health care. he's got a brother that's trying to take a risk an donate him a kidney. no, we shall not be opening the borders so that anybody who has a health care need gets in here. we have americans who can't get health care when they need it. we've got to pay for them first. but let's use some common sense. this guy has been around a long time. he's been a great citizen. his kids are now americans. his brother's trying to donate a kidney to him. that seems to be a set of facts that we should be able to absorb and get this done. >> it is an interesting story and i'm sure there are many others like his that we don't about, typical situation with health care in this country and illegal immigrants. thank you. only eight days left until the first votes are cast in the gop race for president. so why is only one republican candidate hitting the trail in iowa today? we'll take you there next. then, an airline takes care of a pet for the holidays.
how this pup wound up stranded at the airport. but first, this year you made a huge difference in helping report report history, from the arab spring to the occupy movement. here is the year that was in ireport. >> i'm so excited. i'm so proud to be an arab today. for the people of egypt to have a better life.
>> whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa! oh, my god. holy crap. oh, my god. the building is going to fall! >> the whole ground was shaking so much, it was unreal. >> it's something that you would not wish upon your worst enemy. >> we're apparently being escorted by the local authorities here down to the media area to get as close to buckingham palace as possible. >> congratulations william and katherine.
aspercreme breaks the grip, with maximum-strength medicine and no embarrassing odor. break the grip of pain with aspercreme. let's check stories making headlines at street level. does it feel like you're constantly charging your mobile device? change might be come that you might like. apple wants to power their devices with hydrogen fuel cells, so instead of hours or days ipods and iphones might last for weeks on one charge. hydrogen fuel cells have been studied for years and they're in a handful of cars. now it looks like apple wants to
put them in your hand. the maker of enfamil can't find the chemical responsible for an infant's death. walmart pulled cans off the shelves last week. so far state, federal and company tests have not found any evidence of the bacteria. the cdc suggests both cases could just be a coincidence. in boston, a stranded puppy got some love from continental airlines workers. that's whoppers, that's his name. his owner was taking him to spain to visit family, but she didn't have the right health certificate and she couldn't send him to a kennel because she's too young for all his shots. >> well, he's beautiful. if you trust us, we'll take him. you go to spain and go have christmas, new year's and he'll be here healthy when you come
back. >> continental babysitting whoppers. they are sending the owner e-mail updates and pictures. and in california, the state supreme court will decide if a man notorious for fabricating magazine articles is fit to practice law. you may remember the story of steven glass, his lies and downfall were featured in the 2003 film "shattered glass". >> i want my playboy. i want a trip to disney world. show me the money! show me the money! >> in that screen he portrays glass pitching a fake story. glass is now a 39-year-old law clerk. he passed the bar exam, but the state bar is questioning if he is morally fit to be a lawyer. he could have a hearing next fall. glass has not commented.
character witnesses have said he's learned his lesson. time now for our political ticker. only eight days left until the first votes are cast in iowa opening the presidental caucus and primary season. fasten your seat belts. cnn political contributor paul steinhauser is in iowa. with the race winding down there, what's it looking like now. >> reporter: it's anybody's guess with one week and one day to go. the most recent poll came out on friday from american research group, people likely to take part in the january 3rd caucus. look at the three-way traffic jam at the top there. ron paul from texas at 21%, former massachusetts governor mitt romney at 20% and former house speaker newt gingrich at 19%. that's basically a dead heat for the top spot. everybody else in single digits. natalie, the big talker is ron paul. this is the headline from the
des moines register, the big paper here in iowa's capitol. paul's numbers have jumped over the past month here in iowa and nationally. remember four years ago he ran for the white house. a lot of people said he was too outside the mainstream republican party, but a lot of republicans are now seeing the issues the way he has seen the issues and continues to see them. it is a big topic of conversation here in iowa, natalie. >> so much for a quiet holiday for iowans this year. >> reporter: nonstop here. two days off for christmas. today is a federal holiday. much of the candidates are down except for rick santorum from pennsylvania. he's campaigning today. he has a pheasant hunt which is a popular thing among some in iowa. a bunch of other candidates get into the mix tomorrow, natalie. >> paul steinhauser for us in
iowa, thanks so much. thank you for watching. it's natalie allen in nor randi kaye. now more cnn newsroom with asha sesay. >> thanks, natalie. let's catch you up on everything making the news this hour. rapid fire. let's go. one week from tomorrow, americans will cast their first votes in the 2012 presidential race. that's when iowa holds its caucuses. polls show no clear winner the republican race. three candidates in a dead heat, newt gingrich, ron paul and mitt romney. the american research group shows paul at 21%, romney at 20%. as you see, gingrich at 19%. the other candidates are all in single digits. a medical helicopter carrying three people crashed in florida this morning. the mayo clinic confirms two of its employees were on the helicopter headed to the university of florida in gainesville to harvest organs. the faa say it is chopper went down east of gainesville. there's no word yet on whether
anyone survived the crash. a christmas gathering near dallas ends in a massacre. police in grapevine, texas, say seven family members were shot to death while opening presents. investigators believe the attacker is among the dead. the shooter was believed to have been related to the family by marriage. >> we see the cops around there, but we never really hear nothing, family arguments probably. other than that, it's a very quiet neighborhood. >> police say the victims range in age from 15 to 59 years old. the number of people killed in a series of church bombings in nigeria is more than 30. the string of blasts tore through churches in five cities. back ka haram claimed responsibility. this group targeted them in the past. stratfor.com, just who did the hacking? that remains in question.
early claims said the activist hacking group anonymous did it. anonymous is denying it. the hackers say they distributed information on 4,000 credit cards. parents, what would you say if i told you it's okay to let your teens have sex in your house? well, it is, according to amy shalot, a soes olths and college professor who has compared with how parents deal with adult sexuality hear in the u.s. and in the netherlands. >> the takeaway is you can have more open conversations. you should probably have more open conversations about what's a good relationship. sex and contraception should go together. what does it mean to be ready? how to get rid of some of these gender stereo types? >> well, in london it's a nice day for a walk, out of necessity
that is. some rail workers are on strike today. parts of the system are shut down. get this. it's one of the busiest shopping days of the year. the strike hasn't stopped thousands of people from heading the the big department stores to look for all those bargains. crowds of furious russian voters packed moscow streets and squares all weekend. they are angry at results of this month's parliamentary vote that kept vladimir putin's party in power. many russians feel the election was rigged. the protesters are also demanding fairness in the presidential election set for march. this weekend marked the 20th anniversary of the collapse of the ussr. we have got a lot more to cover in the next two hours. watch. this soldier won meddals fo bravery at war. but it was his family living room where he took the bullet that paralyzed him.
>> he's a good boy. he's an excellent boy. >> today what we're learning about this young man and the shocking argument that put him in the crossfire. and a big-time ad executive loses her entire family in a house fire. you'll hear about this family's tragic final moments. we're keeping nutd gingrich honest after truth comes out about his first divorce. then the power of extreme couponing used to do good. >> on this particular receipt we spent $3.69 and we saved $63.36. plus, it's monday. that means we fill your afternoon with music, but you'll want to watch closely to see how this musician makes her beautiful tunes.
the news starts now. geico. fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent or more on car insurance. for you today ? we gave people right off the street a script and had them read it. no, sorry, i can't help you with that. i'm not authorized to access that transaction. that's not in our policy. i will transfer you now. my supervisor is currently not available. would you like to hold ? that department is currently closed. have i helped you with everything you needed ? if your bank doesn't give you knowledgeable customer service 24/7, you need an ally. ally bank. no nonsense. just people sense.
a soldier who just barely survived the battlefields of afghanistan is shot and paralyzed at his own homecoming party in california. police are still looking for the man who allegedly pulled the trigger. 22-year-old christopher sullivan returned home to san bernardino just last week for christmas after spending much of the year recovering from a suicide attack in kandahar. those injuries earned him a purple heart. sullivan's friends threw him a party on friday. it turned ugly when his younger brother and another man started fighting about football. when sullivan tried to break it up, police say the other man pulled out a gun and shot him twice, shattering his spine. investigators say the suspect,
19-year-old rub pin jurado is still on the loose and is considered aurmd and dangerous. we're joined on the phone by suzanne sullivan, the mother of christopher, a family going through so much at the time. thank you for joining us. please tell us how is your son doing today? >> christopher is hanging in. he is on life support, but that's only to sedate him so he won't move or get hurt. little by little they'll give him -- let him breathe on his own, but it's going to take some time. >> and the doctors are telling you that they believe he's going to be paralyze friday the neck down? >> yes. >> you weren't actually there when this shooting happened. >> no. >> talk to me. how did you find out about what
had happened to your son. >> my son called me -- my younger boy, he called me and told me, mom, mom, hurry up and get down here. christopher's been shot. my daughter answered, and she said don't be playing with me. you're playing. he's like, no, for real, you have to get down here. i tried so fast to get down there, it seemed like i was never reaching it. but i got there and the police wouldn't let me go in for their reasons. that was about it till i got to the hospital where they said he was at. >> and then you find out that he has been shot and you hear the circumstances, that it was just, as we understand it right now, being reported an argument over football. talk to me about what you know about the man who allegedly shot your son? did they even know each other prior to this party where they were at? >> what i was told is no, i
don't know who he is. but what i was told was he went to school with christopher, and i get they played football for a year or two. that's what i've been told. he was just there. i don't know. he was not even involved in the thing of the football. he just showed up and told the guy that this is my team, and the guy said, well, they lost and that set him off. he got mad because the guy said his team lost. he pulled out a gun and shot, first one time in the air and then two other times. >> you know, what makes this even more upsetting and tragic is that christopher was involved in a situation in afghanistan where he survived a suicide attack. >> yes. >> and he had been recovering
from that. he'd received the purple heart for those acts of bravery. for him to come home at his own homecoming party and for this to happen -- >> it's a tragedy, but, yes, that's the circumstances. christopher just a year ago, it was december 12th, and he lost five of his men. he really enjoyed his platoon. he was a good man. >> he was a good son. you said that. >> yes, he was. he was a very good son. and i don't know -- just to say that he was a wonderful man and a great soldier. and yes, he got the purple heart. that's showing a lot of people right there that he would give his shirt off his back just to help anybody. and now he comes home to this.
he said, mom, i know i'm going to die by the time i'm 24, but i'm going to die for my country. i don't think christopher ever thought in his own back yard. never did i think -- i don't think he ever would have thought that. but he's not dead. he's alive and i just thank god for that. >> yeah. we're all very thankful for that. he doesn't know the extent of his injuries right now. >> he asked yesterday what happened. he was mumbling and we figured out and he would shake his head. he asked us what happened, and we told him. he said why? and we told him what it was about. and he just closed his eyes. >> does he understand?
>> i think he did. after that he didn't really respond mo more after that. >> this is obviously a really tough time for you. we can't even begin to imagine what the family is going through. how is his brother? it was his brother that was having this disagreement with this alleged shooter that christopher intervened. how is he doing? >> it's the baby brother. it's hard. it's hard for his other brother, too. can i say names? >> anything you're comfortable sharing with us. >> i'll just say it was his older brother, the middle baby. they're both taking it hard. it's really hard for them. they don't understand it. they're confused, just like everybody is. they just want him to turn himself in. he just want justice to be done,
all of us. it's just taking so long and it's getting really frustrating. >> i know that christopher had a visit from someone in his infantry. you already said being part of the army meant so much to him. share, if you would, what that visit -- what happened during that visit and who came to see him. >> richard. his name was richard. he's from the 101st infantry division, a retired vet. he came to bring christopher -- the eagle flag. he hung it on the wall. and when i went back i told him i don't know if you remember when he came earlier, christopher. i said, but richard came to bring you your screaming eagle flag from your platoon. i said, would you like to see it? he shook his head. i said, all right, i'm taking it
off the wall, son. i said, okay, if you want to see it, you need to open up your eyes. he opened his eyes up. he looked at the flag. he closed his eyes and he started crying. tears were just rolling down his face. and then he just -- i asked him, okay, son, what would you like for me to do with this flag? would you like for me to hang it back up or would you like for me to cover you with it? i said move your eyes if you want me to cover you with it. he moved his eyes. he wanted me to cover him with this flag. christopher has the screaming eagle on top of him. he loved his platoon.
he loved his fellow soldiers. he was so proud to serve our country. he's beautiful. he always carried a smile. anybody who knew chris, he was always full of life. he's still going to be full of life. say prayers and don't give up on my son. >> yes, he s. he has you and the rest of his family with him. this is such a difficult time for you all. christopher and the entire family, you are all in our thoughts and prayers. i just want to say thank you so much for just taking a moment to tell us how he's doing and to just talk about everything that you're going through right now. we really do appreciate it. we're going to continue to check in with you, suzanne and just see what progress christopher is making. okay? >> thank you very much.
let the viewers know, just keep christopher in their prayers and just hope he gets better. and anybody who is out there who knows my son, you know he's a fighter and he's not going to give up. >> suzanne sullivan, thank you so much. i know you're going to see christopher now. we're going to let you go and continue to check in with you over the coming days and weeks. take care and we'll be in touch. thank you so much. >> thank you so much, too. have a good new year. >> thank you. we'll be right back.
if you got a gift card in your stocking, you're hardly alone. gift card sales were expected to hit $28 billion. alison kosik is live in new york to tell us how to get the most bang for your gift card buck. alison? >> reporter: i'd say just get out there and shop like these people are doing behind me. check out these crowds. this is the day after christmas, one of the busiest days for retailers. a lot of these shoppers, yes, they're returning items. in fact, consumers are expected to return up to $46 billion in holiday merchandise. that's because of the record sales that happened on black friday and cyber monday. in addition to returning these items, asha, they're also buying. retailers are offering deep discounts because they're still looking to move a lot of merchandise. remember spring is right around the corner and the retail rers stuck with a lot of merchandise. expect to see a lot of deep discounts. >> i was going to ask you about
that because i haven't had a minute to hit the shops. what kind of items are being marked down by retailers right now? >> right now, what retailers are really pushing, especially this week, are what they call soft line merchandise like clothing and home goods. expect to see a lot of discounts there as opposed to what they call the hard line merchandise like toys and electronics. just so you know, this is the real week shopping week of the year. retailers are trying to seize the moment. they call this the second season, talking about the week between christmas and new year's. they call it the second season for a reason. just last year consumers purchased $62 billion in just that one week. this week retailers say they expect to top if amount, that consumers are expected to buy up to $72 billion worth of goods just in one week. we'll know the exact numbers in the coming weeks when the national retail federation tallies the numbers and lets us
know how well the retailers did this holiday shopping season. >> $72 billion is a lot of money. it looks like a zoo behind you. alison kosik, stay safe out there in new york. thank you. with eight days until the iowa caucuses, the republican primaries are proving to be a tight race. we have new poll numbers that put three candidates nearly tied for first place. find out which candidates. that's coming up. new details surface about the first marriage and divorce of newt gingrich. that story coming up in two minutes. stay with us.
are raising new questions about divorce number one. gingrich says the split was his wife's idea, but was it? cnn's alan duke has on his hands the divorce papers. alan, what do the papers say? >> well, the reason these are relevant this year -- it happened more than 30 years ago -- is because the gingrich campaign, now that he's running for president, for the first time has something of a new explanation, a new defense of this controversial divorce. we've been covering it for three decades. there's not much new in that. they're saying the wife requested the divorce. however, it didn't seem right to me because i was there 30 years ago covering it. i called and talked to her friends. then i went to the courthouse to find the documents in the carroll county courthouse. couldn't find the file at first. eventually we found it stashed away in a court clerk's office. what we found was interesting.
jackie gingrich filing a petition opposing the divorce. >> so she didn't want it? >> she didn't want it. one of the divorce filings very clearly stated she did not want the judge to grant the divorce. although the defendant doesn't admit -- she didn't admit the marriage was ir retrievebly broken. further on she said she wanted to try to save it. i've had interviews with some people who knew her quite well and knew newt gingrich from their church and sunday school class. i interviewed gerald johnson, a state legislator at the time, called me he was surprised the campaign would now try to suggest that newt gingrich was divorcing his first wife because she asked him to. >> the point to bring out here for our viewers so they're clear is that newt gingrich has always conceded he's made mistake in his past wife but he said he wiped the slate clean and was telling it like he was. >> in fact, he's 68 years owed,
grandkids, a couple of them. it has been a long time. everybody makes mistakes. many people have divorces. but how do you handle those is something that the people are looking at. he's defended this forever. but what is new now is he is actually saying it was jackie gingrich, his first wife, who asked for the divorce and that's how he's explaining it. a lot of controversy there. >> and the campaign? >> the campaign is standing by saying no, she requested it. >> the campaign is saying she requested it even though you have the court papers that say otherwise? >> yes, we put them online at cnn.com. you can see for yourself exactly that. and she won't talk to us on camera. i've talked to her. i've known her for 30 years or more. there's no indication to me she ever -- in fact, in 1985 she was gave one interview with "the washington post." she called the divorce filing a complete surprise at that time. >> interesting reportings and findings i should add. thank you.
with us from washington is cnn's wolf blitzer. wolf, are we going to get to the issue of the divorce and what -- the narrative that newt gingrich has put out. i want to start out with the fact that his surge seemed to have peaked and may be reversing. we have this fresh poll out of iowa with the caucuses just eight days away. looking at these numbers as you are with me, ron paul, mitt romney and newt gingrich bunched together at the top which begs the question, what's happening to newt? >> if you believe that poll and it's eight days to go, it's three-man race right now in iowa. let's not forget it's not winner take all in iowa. they'll be able to split up the delegates coming out of iowa. in the olden days whoever came out first took all the delegates from iowa. this time around they're moving toward what the democrats do. they have proportionate wing in
terms of the delegate count going into the republican convention later in the summer in tampa. it's a little bit different. there's not necessarily just this notion that if you win even by one or two percentage points you're the winner. obviously you'll be the winner. even the number two and number three, maybe the number four will be able to come out with delegate counts, delegate support going into new hampshire, south carolina and florida all along. right now it's very close. eight days is a long time. a lot can happen. people are going to be looking for endorsements, for example, of congressman steve king, republican of iowa, if he decides to endorse one of the candidates, he has some influence. if chuck grassley, the republican senator from iowa makes a decision to go ahead and endorse, that could have an impact. the governor, terry branson says he's not going to endorse anyone but he can always change his mine. i'm heading the iowa tomorrow and will be interviewing newt
gingrich in "the situation room." on wednesday, mitt romney will be interviewed. >> big important interviews. let's talk about the difference in the narrative, how newt gingrich posits how the divorce came about in his first marriage and what we found out, cnn reporting from the paperwork. does it matter knowing eye wants as you do, knowing their sensibilities. will it matter to them? >> it might matter to some. some social conservatives, some others. but it's been so well documented. now there's a little bit of new information coming in. alan duke got the actual documents, the court papers when newt gingrich filed for divorce. i guess there's a technical distinction. they could say, yes, newt gingrich did file, technically he filed the papers for the divorce, but his first wife asked for the divorce, never going forward and actually filing the paperwork. so they may be disagreeing over the words asked for a divorce
versus filing for a divorce. it's something we can explore when i speak with newt gingrich tomorrow. but i suspect so much of this is already well known, so much is already discounted. i'm not sure it's going to have a huge effect going into the iowa caucuses, although you'll never know. you'll see how it plays out. >> talking about the likes of romney, paul and gingrich representing the first tier of candidates in iowa. who do you see from stekd tier who might mount a final-week surge? >> i think we'll probably be surprised at rick santorum. he's been doing not very well in all the polls, but he spent so much time in iowa. he's been to all 99 counties, gotten important endorsements. working really hard. i suspect rick santorum might do better. rick perry spending a lot of money. he has a lot of commercials rolling out right now. michele bachmann spent a lot of time in iowa. i think that fight between
perry, bachmann and sanitorium will be interesting to watch to see who really comes up at the top of that bottom three, if you will. huntsman isn't even playing in iowa. so forget about him. there are really six candidates that we'll be watching. three or four tickets out of iowa, as they say. we know who the first three are presumably going to be. we'll see if there's one or two others who might still emerge out of iowa and head into new hampshire. >> we should be watching closely. you've got the interview with nutd gingrich tomorrow. you and along with a lot of our political bigwigs, the best political team in television heading the iowa to do a lot of broadcasting. we'll all be watching. thanks for joining us. just a reminder, live coverage of the iowa caucus begins here on cnn next tuesday at 7:00 p.m. eastern. at least 23 people reportedly were killed today in syria. this comes as dozens of arab league observers are expected to arrive in the country after the government agrees to end a
that you're looking at, one of the flash point cities where opposition fighters and syrian troops clash almost daily. we depend on amateur videos like this one to see what's happening in syria. that may be about to change because the syrian government is finally allowing outsiders close to fighting. a team of arab league observers agree to a mission only if syrian forces back away from cities and end all forms of violence. the first elements of that group are there already. i want to bring in mohammed jamjoom in cairo watching developments from there. who exactly is the group and what exactly will they with b doing? >> reporter: as of now it's about 50 observers who have arrived in damascus. we've been told they've just arrived in the past half hour to 45 minutes. we're told they're going to go tomorrow to flash point cities like homs and other provinces to
start their monitoring mission. the protocol that was signed between the arab league and syria just a few days ago specifies that there must be an end to the violence, that these monitors will observe to make sure that the military is pulled from towns and villages in syria, detainees are released, that an end to the violence occurs. on the same day that these observers have arrived, we heard horrific tales in cities like homs. we have spoken to activists who told us that not only have 23 people been killed and hundreds wounded, but shelling continues. we've seen videos purporting to show tanks in the streets, purporting to show houses being shelled with people screaming out "god is great." they say the situation is dire and they're fearful if the arab league isn't actually able to go to these cities and do their work in an unfettered kind of way, they're afraid genocide is going to happen.
>> that's the basic question here, if on the very day an arab party arrives, how effective will they really be? >> reporter: that's the key question. there are a lot of activist groups in sera that, even though they welcome the arab league mission, being able to hope they're able to do their work and try to end the violence, they don't believe the body is an effective one. they don't believe the arab league is actually going to be able to have the free rain they need to have done. they don't bleed the al assad regime. they continue to claim they're fighting terrorism in that country. the activists say they're saying that in order to continue the months' long crackdown on them. other activists say over 6,000 people have been killed. people say, if there's 50 tore 100 observers that go in, how much exactly will they be able to do? will they be able to escape their minders and given the access they need to be given in order to really help end this
cycle of violence? nobody knows at this point. >> you make an important point about minders. we know to date the syrian government has been very reluctant, has refused to allow international journalists to freely move about syria or in some cases get into syria at different points of the year. you make the point, to move around in syria you'll need the government minders and what access will they get to truly see what's going on on the ground. >> reporter: absolutely. one member of the advance arab league team that spoke to cnn earlier said they would be going around in syria with syrian security because the syrian government insisted the syrian forces would need to provide them security. so that, again, begs the question, if syrian security is with them, are they going to be taken to the real flash point parts of these towns, of these provinces? we've heard these horrific tales the past few days in cities like
homs, in neighborhoods where we're told a massacre is happening. the more activists we speak to, the more we hear words like carnage, continued blood bath. the question is how much can these people do, how effective will they be? we'll only be able to tell in the days and weeks to come. >> mohammed jamjoom, thank you. now this. >> it's a special place because of the land first and foremost. this is right in the heart of napa valley, on some of the best primo, aaa quality cabernet land anywhere. >> a california winery is not only beautiful, but also has a heart. coming up, how every bottle of wine helps save the lives of babies in need. what will all of you be taking and writing about -- talking about writing about in the coming year. the global language monitor predicts these top five words or phraseses. at number five, solar max.
that refers to the peak of the 11-year sun spot cycle. duh, didn't you know that? number four, baktun, a cycle of time used by the mayans. a lot of people say if you go by the current baktun, the mayan apocalypse will happen next year. number three, apparently a lot of you will be referring to the middle kingdom, another name for china as the economic surge is expected to continue in the comings year. the top projections for next year's trending words are coming up after a quick break. we promise they are in plain english. in one... burgers and soup. did you hear him honey? burgers and soup. love you. they're cute. [ male announcer ] progresso. you gotta taste this soup. what ? customers didn't like it.
so why do banks do it ? hello ? hello ?! if your bank doesn't let you talk to a real person 24/7, you need an ally. hello ? ally bank. no nonsense. just people sense. you tell us what you want to pay, and we give you a range of coverages to choose from. who is she? that's flobot. she's this new robot we're trying out, mostly for, like, small stuff. wow! look at her go! she's pretty good. she's pretty good. hey, flobot, great job. oops. [ powers down ] uh-oh, flobot is broken.
so what will the world english speakers be talking about in 2012? the global language monitor predicts the second most used word will be olympiad. every four years the summer games are played. in 2012, london, my hometown is the place to be which may be why the number one word on the list is kate, as in the duchess of cambridge, fashionista and subject of many a tabloid headline.
well, wine is good for your heart in many ways. in today's giving in focus, how one man's passion for wine and philanthropy helped define a historic california winery. >> el lers estate is a special place because of the land, first and foremost. this is right in the heart of napa valley on some of the very, very best primo, aaa quality cabernet land anywhere. the land here at ellers estates has been in grapes for 25 years. john la duke was an amazing businessman, built huge businesses in france, came to america, did the same thing. john la duke's father and grandfather both died in their 50s from heart disease. john la duke had a problem with his own ticker and was at the time very cutting edge heart by pass surgery at the mayo clinic.
so he wanted to give something back. he created the foundation. the he duke foundation funds international card haves lar and neuro vascular research to the tune of $200 million over the last 11 years. when i was hired here at ellers estate, my marching orders were to make great wine, take care of the property, the brand, the personnel and send the check back to the foundation. >> the money is substantial. it really allows a significant amount of research to be performed. the ultimate goal is to treat newborns that are born with the most devastating type of congenital heart disease and improve their lives dramatically. the goal is ultimately that these children that 20 years ago had absolutely no prognosis go on and live long, fruitful lives. >> i didn't come here to be a
do-gooder. i came here because i knew i could make world class wine from this land. on top of all that, to be owned by this foundation and return all of our profits back to support international cardiovascular research is just astounding. >> if you look carefully and turn the e side wayless, you see a little heart in the e. it's first and foremost about the e. but we love that little heart in the logo. >> a great story of kindness. a devastating house fire claims the lives of one woman's mother, her father and her three small children. we are live outside the house in connecticut right after this very quick break. stay with us.
an absolutely tragic christmas day in the town of stamford, connecticut. the first call came into the fire department at 4:52 a.m. a massive fire at a victorian mansion owned by an ad executive. firefighters rushed the home but had to retreat from the intense flames and heat. three children died, three girls, as did their grandparents. take a listen to the town's mayor. >> a horrible tragedy. it's christmas day. there probably has not been a worse christmas day in the city
of stamford. >> robert golson of cnn affiliate is standing by. we want to show the photo of the fire victims as recently as the day before their death. tell us what you know about the victims. >> this is an absolutely horrifying story. we'll show you the neighborhood while we tell you a little about the victims, where all five of these people died christmas morning. this dead ends right onto long island sound. the house is just beyond those people to the right. they have taken the house down. it was opened by an advertising executive out of new york city, madonna badger, 47-year-old woman. she was recently divorced. she has three young daughters. two of them were twins. her grandparents were also in the house -- excuse me -- her parents were also in the house with her. apparently the fire just got so out of control, it was so intense, that they were not able to escape. the firefighters telling us when they got here they couldn't even
get close to the house. they were able sougat some poin get to the third story. the mom had gotten outside the house. she apparently was trying to get up some scaffolding, there were renovations on going at the house. they were trying to get up and rescue the children and her parents before the firefighters got here. of course, they were not able to do that. it was just an absolutely horrifying christmas morning for this family as they lost the three young girls and the mom's mother and father. we are told the mother, madonna badger, had to be sent over to the hospital. she took in too much smoke. she has been released. we have not been able to talk to her at this point. >> have authorities been able to pinpoint the cause of this fire? and the fact that it spread so rapidly? >> reporter: yeah. the fire was very intense. they're not clear. we just talked to the chief. it's not clear if any of these
renovations had anything to do with that, maybe because the house had been hollowed out a little bit, maybe there was a lot of chance for air to get in. we don't know if there were chemicals or paints or anything used in these renovations. the fire marshal is handling the investigation. they said they were able to get in the house and do all of their physical work. they actually took the house down right after that, late this morning. now they still want to do some interviews. they want to talk to, of course, all the people who survived the deadly fire. they say tomorrow at 5:00 they'll call a news conference. we're hearing they may release some sort of result of the fire -- excuse me -- the cause of the fire but they also may have some information on what they've been able to rule out. one of the first deputy chiefs was telling one reporter here that apparently they do not think this had anything to do with the renovations, at this point it's unclear what caused this fire. >> what we can say is it is indeed a great tragedy.
thank you, robert. a musician who is as interesting to watch as she is to listen to. check this out. >> it's kind of a two hand technique. ♪ >> she has a personal connection to our very own brooke baldwin. stick around for today's music monday. wch le me rf the web al. guinea pig: row...row.took one, 8 months to get the guin: ..row. lile cbby one to yell row! guineaig: ro's kof strange. guinig: row...row. such a simple word... row. anncr: t an easierayof strange. save. get online. go to geico.com. get a quote. e u 15% or more on car insurance. what is it about taking a first step that we find so compelling?
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every monday at this time brook profiles an artist whose music has touched her. today she has an even closer connection to the musician we're about to feature. brooke actually went to high school right in atlanta with khaki king. you want to pay very close attention to the amazing way she plays. enjoy. ♪ >> i have memories of you in high school playing on stage kaki with drums. you were drumming. >> i played drums, yeah. >> are you still? >> yeah. i played a lot of drums on records that i've made. drums were the -- i guess in a weird way drums were the public and the social aspect of music for me. everyone needed a drummer and everyone needed a bass player. i was there to fill that role in everyone's band. that was kind of what i did to
hang out. guitar became more and more of this closed thing because i really wanted a solo guitar at an early age. you don't really hang out and do with people. it became my way in to having friends. guitar became my way in to me. >> when did you first start moving from conventional playing to tapping the front board? >> i started playing finger style which has to do with the fake nalts and detuning the guitar. i had already been experimenting probably around age 14. it wasn't too long, a few years of that where i'd learn a new concept for the guitar, something i didn't think you could do. it would open this world and i would get so into it. i would learn the next step. i kind of almost went down this rabbit hole. i didn't know what i was doing was strange or something that wouldn't normally be done.
tapping kind of came -- it sort of came naturally part of it. it was like, well, how do i get the sound i want? that guy does it like this. why don't i just try to do that on the guitar? i need to hear the note. the only way i can do it is by maybe pressing it with the right hand instead of playing with my left. the only way i can feel this pulse of the beat, if i bang a little on the guitar. there's a lot of problem solving that comes -- >> are you good at math? >> i was actually pretty good at math. >> will you show me? >> i will show you, yes. here is sort of an example. it's kind of a two-hand technique. ♪ ♪